Hugo Von Hofmannsthal: The Two of Them (From German)

The Two of Them
By Hugo von Hofmannsthal
Translated by A.Z. Foreman

Her fingers brought the wine-cup in,
Its rim as shapely as her chin,
So easy, so assured her air
That not a drop fell anywhere.

So firm, so easy was his hand:
He rode a fine and fiery horse
And with a careless gesture's force
He brought it, trembling, to a stand.

But as he leaned with fingers fanned
To take the wine-cup from her hand
They found it there too hard to touch:
For both were quivering so much
That neither hand the other found
And dark wine spilled across the ground.


The Original:

Die Beiden

Sie trug den Becher in der Hand
-
Ihr Kinn und Mund gleich seinem Rand -
So leicht und sicher war ihr Gang,
Kein Tropfen aus dem Becher sprang.

So leicht und fest war seine Hand;
Er ritt auf einem jungen Pferde,
Und mit nachlässiger Gebärde
Erzwang er, daß es zitternd stand.

Jedoch, wenn er aus ihrer Hand

Den leichten Becher nehmen sollte,

So war es beiden allzu schwer:
Denn beide bebten sie so sehr,

Daß keine Hand die andre fand

Und dunkler Wein am Boden rollte.

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